Magic Words in the “Science of Reading”

Magic Words in the “Science of Reading”

Magic Words is embedded in the “The Science of Reading”.

Magic Words advocates and promotes targeted, explicit, and systematic teaching of the core principles of learning to read. For over twenty years Magic Words has provided teachers and students with hands-on play based resources for teaching reading.

The Science of Reading is a term used to describe a similar evidence-based approach to teaching and learning to read, just like Magic Words. Like Magic Words, it emphasizes the importance of tracking and monitoring progress, targeted teaching of explicit skills, understanding (comprehension) and applying research from linguistics, psychology, cognitive science, and education to effectively teach children how to read.

An evidence-based approach is central to the idea that reading is a complex cognitive process that involves various skills and components, and it supports systematic and structured instruction to help students become competent readers.

The key principles of the Science of Reading include:

  1. Phonemic Awareness: This is the ability to recognize and manipulate individual sounds, or phonemes, in spoken language. The Magic Words games and activities delivers hands on literacy activities to teach and practice phonemic awareness.
  2. Phonics: Phonics instruction focuses on the relationship between the sounds (phonemes) and the representations of those sounds as letters (graphemes). The Magic Words provides a targeted, explicit, and systematic approach to helping students decode words by sounding out the letters and blending them together.
  3. Oral Language: Expanding a student's vocabulary is crucial for reading comprehension. The more words a student knows the greater the capacity to read and learn.
  4. Fluency: Fluency refers to the ability to read text with accuracy speed and expression. Rapid Automatic Naming (RAN) with the Magic Words Playing Cards increases automaticity to improve reading speed and accuracy. Also practising reading passages from books containing the high frequency words (used in RAN) builds fluency and competence in reading. 
  5. Comprehension: Understanding the meaning of what is read is the goal of reading. Strategies such as read and retell, summarization, and applying knowledge assist in improving reading comprehension.
  6. Vocabulary: A core bank of automatic words (approximately 300, which provides 70% of all words, on average), covering all the high frequency words, are critical to all readers fluency and comprehension in reading.
  7. Assessment: Regular assessment is essential to tracking and monitoring students’ progress on a regular basis and adapting and modifying teaching and learning instruction from the evidence gathered in learning to read.

The Magic Words Professional Learning session covers all seven key principles and highlights the best strategies for maximising the reading outcomes for all students'.

Back to blog